National Science Foundation – Dear Colleague Letter: NSF-DFG Lead Agency Opportunity in Molecular and Cellular Biology

Recognizing the importance of international collaborations in promoting scientific discoveries, the US National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on research cooperation. The MOU provides an overarching framework to encourage collaboration between US and German research communities and sets out the principles by which jointly supported activities might be developed. The MOU provides for a Lead Agency Opportunity whereby proposals may be submitted to either NSF or DFG.

The National Science Foundation has issued NSF-22-015 “Dear Colleague Letter”

To facilitate the support of collaborative work between US researchers and their German counterparts, the Division of Molecular and Cellular Bioscience (BIO/MCB) at NSF and the Division of Molecular and Organismal Biology and Agriculture (MOBA) at DFG are pleased to announce a Lead Agency Opportunity in the area of Molecular and Cell Biology (NSF-DFG MolCellBio). The goal of this Opportunity is to help reduce some of the current barriers to working internationally.

This Lead Agency Opportunity allows US and German researchers to develop and submit a single proposal to either NSF or DFG describing a project involving US and German researchers that will undergo a single review process by the designated Lead Agency.

US and German collaborators are invited to submit joint proposals in the areas covered by NSF’s BIO/MCB and DFG’s review board 201 “Basic Research in Biology and Medicine.” The proposals should focus on basic research at a molecular, subcellular or cellular level, including theoretical approaches. Proposals encompassing tissues, organs or whole animals will not be considered. Research in the areas of plant sciences, microbiology, immunology, and neurosciences is also excluded. Proposals must provide a clear rationale for the need for a US-German collaboration, including the unique expertise and synergy that the collaborating researchers will bring to the project. Proposers should note that this Lead Agency Opportunity does not represent new or ring-fenced funding. Researchers in Germany are invited to read the Information for Researchers to be posted under Funding Opportunities with Individual Countries for more information.

For additional information, please click here to see the full letter.

Proposals can be submitted started on January 3, 2022 on a continuous basis. If you are interested in submitting a proposal, please contact